How Early Pregnancy Discharge Starts

Early pregnancy discharge usually starts with some spotting, which is often confused with your period. Many women experience slight bloody vaginal discharge throughout their first trimester. There are a few conditions that can cause this type of bleeding, including implantation bleeding (which occurs when the fertilized egg attaches to the uterus) and miscarriage.

Early pregnancy discharge is a common early sign of pregnancy. It can be any color, but if it is white or clear and has no odor, then it’s usually just mucus from the cervix. However, if you see red blood, possibly mixed with some mucus, that is a definite sign that you could be pregnant or experiencing an irregular period.

First pregnancy discharge or mucus is a common occurrence, which most women may experience. However, you should know how it starts and when you should see a doctor. Pregnancy discharge usually starts between 6 and 12 days of conception and can be similar to that of your period. The discharge may resemble spotting or light bleeding. Some women have ovulation pains, which are similar to the pain experienced during menstruation. It’s important not to mistake these symptoms for those of pregnancy! Many women confuse these symptoms with their period because the first few days can be irregular if you are not taking a pregnancy test.

When you are pregnant, the egg and sperm join together to form a fertilized egg. The fertilized egg then travels down the fallopian tube toward your uterus. A few days after conception, you may notice that there is a yellow or white discharge called leukorrhea coming out of your vagina. This discharge is made up of mucus left behind by the mucus plug that blocked off your cervix while it was harboring the fertilized egg during ovulation.

The signs of an early pregnancy can vary from woman to woman. You may feel your body making changes quickly (within the first month of pregnancy) or you may not notice any symptoms at all. Symptoms of early pregnancy can include a missed period, an increased need to urinate, swollen and tender breasts, fatigue, and morning sickness.

How quickly can I know if I’m pregnant?

Pregnancy is a different experience for each woman. Some women may suspect they’re pregnant within the first few days of pregnancy, while others don’t notice anything until they miss a period. There are also some women who don’t know they’re pregnant until months after conception.

The most clear-cut way to know if you’re pregnant is to take a pregnancy test. When you take a pregnancy test, it’s measuring a hormone called human chorionic gonadotrophin (hCG). This hormone starts building in your body from the moment of conception and will multiply rapidly in the beginning of your pregnancy. Despite its early appearance in the process, it takes some time for your body to build up enough hCG to register on a pregnancy test. Typically, it takes about three to four weeks from the first day of your last period before there’s enough hCG in your body for a positive pregnancy test.

When can I take a pregnancy test?

Because it takes time for the hormone hCG to build up in your body, it’s often best to wait till you miss your period before taking a home pregnancy test. Before this point the test may come up negative, even if you are actually pregnant.

Are home pregnancy tests the best way to check for an early pregnancy?

Home pregnancy tests are generally very reliable. These tests involve urinating on a small test strip and then waiting for a symbol to appear in the result window. This window will usually show a test image (sometimes this is a single straight line). This symbol appears first and means that the test is working. Always check the packaging and instructions of your test to make sure it is working correctly. Within a few minutes, the test will show either a positive result or a negative result. Some digital tests will display a word or phrase (pregnant or not pregnant).

Blood tests for a possible pregnancy are done in your healthcare provider’s office. This version of the test looks for hCG in your blood. You still need to wait for hCG to build up in your body before taking this type of pregnancy test. Your healthcare provider may recommend this option in some cases. Call your provider if you suspect you’re pregnant and discuss the best type of test.

What are five common signs of pregnancy?

There are several signs of early pregnancy that you could experience. Not everyone will have all of these symptoms, and some women may not feel any of these things. Pregnancy symptoms throughout the entire pregnancy can vary dramatically between women. It’s important not to compare your pregnancy to someone else’s.

Common early pregnancy symptoms can include:

  • A missed period: The most common and clear-cut sign of pregnancy is a missed period. Once conception has happened, your body produces hormones that stop ovulation and the shedding of the lining of your uterus. This means that your cycle has stopped and you won’t have a period again until after the baby is born. However, missing your period isn’t always a sign of pregnancy. You can also miss your period from stress, excessive exercise, dieting, hormone imbalances and other factors that might cause irregular periods.
  • Frequent trips to the bathroom: Before you even miss a period, you may notice that you have to urinate more often. This actually happens because you have more blood than before. During pregnancy, your body’s blood supply increases. Your kidneys filter your blood and remove the extra waste. This waste leaves your body as urine. The more blood in your body, the more you will have to urinate.
  • Fatigue (feeling tired): Many women feel extremely tired in early pregnancy. This sign of pregnancy happens because of high levels of the hormone progesterone. Similarly to other early pregnancy symptoms, fatigue tends to get better in the second trimester. However, it does come back in the third trimester for many women.
  • Morning (and noon and night) sickness: Despite the name, this pregnancy symptom can happen at any time of the day or night. Nausea can happen as early as two weeks into a pregnancy or it can start a few months after conception. Not everyone experiences nausea and there are various levels of nausea. You can have nausea without vomiting—this changes from woman to woman. About half of pregnant women have vomiting. Though nausea during pregnancy is fairly normal, it can be a problem if you become dehydrated. Women who cannot keep down food and fluids because of extreme nausea could have a condition called hyperemesis gravidarum. Contact your healthcare provider if you are experiencing extreme nausea and dehydration.
  • Sore (and enlarging) breasts: Your breasts can become tender to the touch during pregnancy. The soreness may be similar to the way breasts feel before a period, only more so. Your nipples might also begin to darken and enlarge. This soreness is temporary and fades once your body gets used to the increased hormones. You may also notice that your breasts have enlarged and your bra is tighter than normal.

What are some less common signs of early pregnancy?

There are some additional signs of early pregnancy that aren’t as common. Just like with the most common symptoms, these signs of pregnancy may or may not happen. It’s important to remember that everyone is different and will experience unique symptoms.

Less common signs of early pregnancy can include:

  • Spotting (also called implantation bleeding): Though it may seem like a bad sign, light bleeding (spotting) can be a sign that your embryo has implanted in the lining of your uterus. Implantation takes place several days after conception. Implantation bleeding will look like small drops of blood or a brownish discharge from the vagina. It can start around the time of your regular period and can last for a few days to a few weeks. Spotting can cause some women to think they have just had a light period and aren’t pregnant.
  • Food cravings, constant hunger and food aversions: Food can be complicated during early pregnancy. Some women begin to crave certain foods or feel constantly hungry. While some foods and flavors may seem wonderful in early pregnancy, others might suddenly taste unpleasant. Food aversions can happen throughout pregnancy, making you dislike things you previously enjoyed.
  • Metallic taste in your mouth: Many women say that they experience a metallic taste in their mouths during the early stages of pregnancy. It may taste like you have a pile of coins in your mouth. This can happen when you eat certain foods or randomly throughout the day.
  • Headaches and dizzinessHeadaches and the feelings of lightheadedness and dizziness are common during early pregnancy. This happens because of both the hormonal changes in your body and your increasing blood volume.
  • Cramping: You can also experience cramps that might feel like your period is about to start. If these cramps are felt mainly on one side of your body or are severe, it’s important to contact your healthcare provider immediately. This could be a sign of an ectopic pregnancy or other complication.
  • Mood swings: As your hormones continue to change, you could experience mood swings. This is normal and can happen throughout pregnancy. However, if you ever feel anxious, depressed or have thoughts of harming yourself, it’s important to reach out to your healthcare provider.

Could I have the symptoms of early pregnancy and not be pregnant?

Many of the symptoms of early pregnancy overlap with other medical conditions, as well as your typical menstrual cycle. Premenstrual symptoms can be very similar to pregnancy symptoms. This can make it difficult to tell the difference. You can also miss a period without being pregnant. This can happen when you exercise in extreme amounts, lose or gain a lot of weight, or even are stressed. Breastfeeding can also cause your period to stop for a while.

The best way to know you’re pregnant is to take a pregnancy test. If you have missed a period and think there’s a chance you could be pregnant, consider taking a test.

When should I call my doctor about a new pregnancy?

If you have missed a period, taken a pregnancy test and gotten a positive result, your next step will be to call your healthcare provider for your first appointment. While scheduling, your provider may ask if you have already started taking a prenatal vitamin with at least 400mcg of folic acid. These vitamins are important in early pregnancy because they help in the development of your baby’s neural tube. The neural tube will become the brain and spine. Many healthcare providers recommend that any women who could become pregnant take folic acid at all times.

If you are planning a pregnancy, a preconception appointment with your healthcare provider is a good place to start. A preconception appointment is especially important if you take medication for a chronic illness or have other medical conditions like diabeteshypertension or lupus.

During this appointment, your provider will discuss any current medical conditions, as well as your general health before pregnancy. This appointment is meant to get you into the best place for a new pregnancy.

At What Week Of Pregnancy Does Discharge Start

At what week of pregnancy does discharge start? A woman can experience a discharge during the first few weeks of pregnancy. This condition is known as leukorrhea and is a common occurrence for women during their menstrual cycle. However, if you are experiencing a wet or yellowish vaginal secretion that is much more than normal, you may be experiencing a vaginal infection. Leukorrhea is caused by hormones called prostaglandins which stimulate blood flow to the uterus, resulting in increased secretions.

When does discharge start during pregnancy? It is normal for vaginal discharge to be present throughout your pregnancy. See more answers to your questions here!

Your discharge will start in early pregnancy and continue, with some variations as the months progress. It’s perfectly normal for discharge to increase as your body begins making breastmilk for your baby. Your body also releases more mucus during breastfeeding because you are producing colostrum, a nutrient-rich form of milk that helps your baby fight off infections after birth.

The discharge that you experience in early pregnancy is a non-infectious watery or bloody vaginal discharge. Most of the time this discharge starts after implantation and can last several months. When it comes to your baby, the cells are already developing, so would you like to know if conception has occurred? You may be very excited when these symptoms begin and they seem out of the ordinary but don’t worry because it is normal.

How Many Days Does Early pregnancy discharge last

This discharge is a combination of old blood, mucus and cervical tissue from inside the uterus. It can begin in the week after your period but may last up to 14 days if it’s early pregnancy discharge.

Early pregnancy discharge is most often caused by a hormonal imbalance in a woman’s body. It usually isn’t anything to worry about but can be an early sign of pregnancy. Early discharge can start as soon as 4 days before your expected period and lasts up to 3 days.

Early pregnancy discharge is not the same as your menstrual period. If you see pink or brown spotting during the days right before or after your period, it’s most likely implantation bleeding. You might also notice a bit of pink or brown discharge if you’re sexually active and ovulating. It is normal to experience vaginal discharge during pregnancy. Discharge can vary depending on hormone levels, medications and the stage of your pregnancy. Typically, abnormal discharge causes spotting or bleeding, which typically doesn’t last more than a few days. Of course, it’s important to consult with your doctor if you experience abnormal discharge so they can determine the cause.

Verywell / Emily Roberts

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The consistency of vaginal discharge and cervical mucus changes throughout the menstrual cycle and during pregnancy.1 Often, women look for physical signs, including changes in cervical mucus, as a signal of early pregnancy or as a way to know if time is right to try to conceive.

These physical signs of early pregnancy are generally subtle, and therefore they should not be taken as indicators of fertility or pregnancy in the early weeks after conception. A pregnancy test is a more reliable confirmation of pregnancy. If you are pregnant, however, you can expect to experience vaginal discharge throughout your pregnancy.

Vaginal Discharge and Cervical Mucus

It is normal for your body to discharge fluids throughout the menstrual cycle, and cervical mucus is one component of this vaginal discharge. Despite its name, cervical mucus isn’t actually produced by the cervix, but rather by glands located near the cervix.

Cervical mucus plays an important role in your reproductive system. In the non-fertile stages of the menstrual cycle, it becomes thick and sticky to prevent infection. When you’re about to ovulate, it becomes more watery and abundant, which allows sperm to more easily swim and survive.2

You may notice an increase in vaginal discharge right before your period. This change is caused by increased blood flow, changing estrogen levels, and the cervix preparing for menstruation. Monitoring your vaginal discharge (in particular, your cervical mucus) can also help you identify your most fertile time or “fertile window.”3

 How to Check Your Cervical Mucus

Vaginal Discharge Changes During Pregnancy

Just as vaginal discharge changes throughout the menstrual cycle, it also changes during pregnancy. It is usually thin, milky-white or colorless, and with a mild odor (or no odor). This discharge is referred to as leukorrhea. The term frequently refers to vaginal discharge during pregnancy, but leukorrhea is also present in non-pregnant women.4

During pregnancy, leukorrhea production increases due to increased estrogen and blood flow to the vaginal area. However, this increase doesn’t typically become noticeable until the eighth week—after other, more definitive signs of early pregnancy, such as a missed period.

In your first trimester of pregnancy, vaginal discharge increases in an effort to remove dead cells and bacteria from the uterus and vagina to help prevent infections. The amount of vaginal discharge you experience will increase gradually as your pregnancy progresses. As long as it remains generally colorless and odorless, it is normal and not cause for concern.

Over time, this discharge also helps form the mucus plug. This plug blocks the opening of your cervix to prevent an infection from entering the uterus and harming the baby.5

Brown or Pink Discharge During Pregnancy

Brown or pinkish vaginal discharge may occur during pregnancy. This could appear as light streaks or spots of color on your underwear or the toilet paper when you wipe. If it seems like very light bleeding, it could be spotting. Usually, this brown- or pink-tinged discharged does not indicate a problem. Common causes may include:

  • Implantation: Some women (but not all) see a small amount of brown or pink discharge or spotting at the very beginning of pregnancy, around the time their period is due. This may be a sign of implantation—when an embryo implants in the uterine lining, about 10 days after fertilization. It’s unlikely that implantation actually causes the spotting or bleeding. The name is based on the timing.
  • Intercourse or a vaginal exam: At any time in pregnancy, you may experience brown- or pink-tinged discharge following intercourse or an internal exam. This happens because the cervix and vagina are easily irritated during pregnancy, thanks to increased blood flow in the area.6
  • Vigorous exercise: A hard workout can cause spotting or tinged discharge at any point in pregnancy. As long as it does not progress to bleeding, it is usually just a sign that you should ease up on exercise.
  • Bloody show: At the end of pregnancy, as your cervix begins to dilate, the mucus plug slowly breaks down and may come out in small bits, large clumps, or mucousy streaks. This may make vaginal discharge appear brownish or pinkish. Not everyone experiences or notices “bloody show.” While it means that birth is approaching, it could happen hours, days, or even weeks before true labor begins.

When to Call Your Doctor

Some changes in vaginal discharge during pregnancy can be signs of infection. Check in with your healthcare provider if you notice redness, itching, or swelling in the vulva, or changes in discharge including:

  • Color: Yellow, green, or gray rather than colorless or white; bright red (indicating bleeding)
  • Odor: Strong or foul smell rather than mild or odorless
  • Consistency: Frothy or chunky/cottage cheese-like instead of stringy

If the discharge is very watery and seems excessive, it could be amniotic fluid (or even urine). Since leaking amniotic fluid could be a sign of preterm labor, it’s important to call your doctor and have this checked out.

Bleeding (as opposed to light spotting or pink-tinged discharge) in pregnancy is not normal. Always call your doctor right away if you have any vaginal bleeding.

How Long Do You Discharge in Early Pregnancy

Do All Women Get Early Symptoms of Pregnancy?

Every woman is different. So are their experiences of pregnancy. Not every woman has the same symptoms or even the same symptoms from one pregnancy to the next.

Also, because the early symptoms of pregnancy often mimic the symptoms you might experience right before and during menstruation, you may not realize you’re pregnant.

What follows is a description of some of the most common early symptoms of pregnancy. You should know that these symptoms may be caused by other things besides being pregnant. So the fact that you notice some of these symptoms does not necessarily mean you are pregnant. The only way to tell for sure is with a pregnancy test.

Spotting and Cramping

After conception, the fertilized egg attaches itself to wall of the uterus. This can cause one of the earliest signs of pregnancy — spotting and, sometimes, cramping.

That’s called implantation bleeding. It occurs anywhere from six to 12 days after the egg is fertilized.

The cramps resemble menstrual cramps, so some women mistake them and the bleeding for the start of their period. The bleeding and cramps, however, are slight.

Besides bleeding, a woman may notice a white, milky discharge from their vagina. That’s related to the thickening of the vagina‘s walls, which starts almost immediately after conception. The increased growth of cells lining the vagina causes the discharge.

This discharge, which can continue throughout pregnancy, is typically harmless and doesn’t require treatment. But if there is a bad smell related to the discharge or a burning and itching sensation, tell your doctor so they can check on whether you have a yeast or bacterial infection.

Breast Changes

Breast changes are another very early sign of pregnancy. A woman’s hormone levels rapidly change after conception. Because of the changes, their breasts may become swollen, sore, or tingly a week or two later. Or they may feel heavier or fuller or feel tender to the touch. The area around the nipples, called the areola, may also darken.

Other things could cause breast changes. But if the changes are an early symptom of pregnancy, keep in mind that it is going to take several weeks to get used to the new levels of hormones. But when it does, breast pain should ease up.


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Fatigue

Feeling very tired is normal in pregnancy, starting early on.

A woman can start feeling unusually fatigued as soon as one week after conceiving.

Why? It’s often related to a high level of a hormone called progesterone, although other things — such as lower levels of blood sugar, lower blood pressure, and a boost in blood production — can all contribute.

If fatigue is related to pregnancy, it’s important to get plenty of rest. Eating foods that are rich in protein and iron can help offset it.

Nausea (Morning Sickness)

Morning sickness is a famous symptom of pregnancy. But not every pregnant woman gets it.

The exact cause of morning sickness is not known but pregnancy hormones likely contribute to this symptom. Nausea during pregnancy may occur at any time of the day but most commonly in the morning.

Also, some women crave, or can’t stand, certain foods when they become pregnant. That’s also related to hormonal changes. The effect can be so strong that even the thought of what used to be a favorite food can turn a pregnant woman’s stomach.

It’s possible that the nausea, cravings, and food aversions can last for the entire pregnancy. Fortunately, the symptoms lessen for many women at about the 13th or 14th week of their pregnancy.

In the meantime, be sure to eat a healthy diet so that you and your developing baby get essential nutrients. You can talk to your doctor for advice on that.

Missed Period

The most obvious early symptom of pregnancy — and the one that prompts most women to get a pregnancy test — is a missed period. But not all missed or delayed periods are caused by pregnancy.

Also, women can experience some bleeding during pregnancy. If you are pregnant, ask your doctor what you should be aware of with bleeding. For example, when is bleeding normal and when is it a sign of an emergency?

There are reasons, besides pregnancy, for missing a period. it might be that you gained or lost too much weight. Hormonal problems, fatigue, or stress are other possibilities. Some women miss their period when they stop taking birth control pills. But if a period is late and pregnancy is a possibility, you may want to get a pregnancy test.


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Other Early Symptoms of Pregnancy

Pregnancy brings changes in your hormonal balance. And that can cause other symptoms that include:

A pregnant woman could have all of these symptoms, or maybe have only one or two. If any of these symptoms become bothersome, talk with your doctor about them so you can make a plan to offset them.

I think in this case the discharge is because you are pregnant. It can be very confusing and even more confusing that you are not sure what it is. It could be anything from hormonal changes to implantation bleeding, but if there is no other symptoms go to the doctor. They can make you feel more comfortable in knowing what it might be and most importantly help you out

It depends on the circumstances and how long you have been pregnant. If you’re having cramps, bleeding or contractions, call your doctor immediately, especially if this is your first pregnancy.

This is a question that I hear quite often from my patients. The best way to learn about the discharge is to wait and see what your body does naturally. There is no set answer as every woman has different discharge patterns and periods of time. It may be just like your normal cycles or you may have spotting, light bleeding, or even feel like you are on your period (with some pregnant women). This is all normal in early pregnancy, but if it continues past 4 weeks then this would be something to talk with your OBGYN about.

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